What does Flora mean?

   Flora is a term applied to all of the trees, bushes, flowers, grasses, and other types of plants that grow in a particular region. It is often restricted to a segment of the plant kingdom. Flora usually refers to the plants that are native to a particular region, but it often includes naturalized plants, that is, introduced plants that maintain themselves and spread without the help of man. We may speak of the flora of a region as large as North America, or larger, or as small as Bermuda or Iceland, or smaller. The flora of each region is distinctive, because many plants that grow in one region will not grow in another. For instance, bananas and several species of palm trees grow in Bermuda but will not grow in Iceland. Low evergreen shrubs and certain mosses grow in Iceland but will not grow in Bermuda. Palms grow in southern Florida but not in northern Illinois. The term flora is also applied to the plants that flourished during earlier periods in the history of the earth. For example, an author may refer to the flora of the Eocene geological period of more than 50 million years ago. The flora of New England during the Eocene period was different from the present-day flora of New England. The term flora is also applied to the microscopic plants that flourish in various parts of the body. For example, intestinal flora is the bacteria found in the intestines.